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Attila the Hen

3 months on - very happy

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We recieved our blue eglu at the end of October, and the chickens started settling in. I'd never had anything to do with live chickens before, so all of this is new to me. We live on a housing estate in Gloucestershire, and as such have quite a small garden. We popped the eglu onto the grass, with the intention of moving it around every week or so



Unfortunately, the garden is absolutely water logged at the moment, and the grass has never been very strong as this area has quite a problem with craneflies eating the grass roots. What this meant is that within not very long (about 5 moves of the eglu) our back garden resembled the Somme. This isn't the fault of the Eglu, you'll understand - just that our garden was only just about holding its own without the chickens there. Because of this, we decided to build a home for the Eglu. We used 2 long planks of decking, and created this in about 3 hours - half filling it with the old bark chippings from our path (since replaced with chippings since it had turned to mush in the rain) and then topped off with a bag of chippings from the garden centre.


The corners that you see serve three functions. They help to make the corners much stronger, I can stand on them when i'm letting the chickens out into the garden, and they go over the corners of the run meaning that no fox could ever dig his way under there - now we are much happier about the possibility of leaving the girls overnight in an emergency with their little door open.


Well, a few weeks went by and only one of the girls (both Gingernut rangers) had any sort of a comb. We thought that as it was going into December, we probably wouldn't get any eggs until the spring. We just resigned ourselves to that. After all, they are really just pets. If they happen to produce some eggs, all the better. Thinking of chickens simply as egg producing machines is what led to the horrors of battery chicken farms (Sorry - going off topic here). They were both very timid at first, then the one with the comb (Ethelred the unroasted - I know, but we're happy this way) started to become much more gregarious, coming up to us to feed out of our hand, and squatting down when we got quite near. Lo and behold, about a week later came our first egg.



Yum Yum.


Anyway - the other chicken - the one without the comb continued to be very timid, and was showing no signs of growing a comb. Again, we resigned ourselves to the possibility that there would be no eggs from that one until at least spring. This week, lo and behold - two eggs in one day. It seems that Attila is doing her stuff.



Note to self - take pictures in good light, without flash to prevent the 'devil chicken' look.


Well, all in all we're very happy with Omlet, the Eglu and the chickens. Even the cat has got used to them and stopped chasing them. She was only doing it for fun, but once they got near to lay and became less timid, they stood up to her once. She now mostly walks past them with an air of regal indifference. Once in a while, she goes for a chat to her 'subjects' though.




On there you can see the two chucks with our very interested moggy named Willow. A few weeks ago, she got run over and we thought that we might lose her. She made an amazing recovery and was allowed home, albeit with a very limp flaccid tail. She was always a 'straight up in the air' tail type cat, and so looked very sorry for herself. The vet thought that she was going to have to have the tail amputated. She was due to go it to have it taken off, and the morning of the operation we noticed a slight twitch. I cancelled the op, and decided to give her another week - we could have imagined it after all. Three weeks later, and she is back with an almost straight in the air type tail. It's a little crooked, but it's better than nothing. One thought for you though, if cats communicate with their ears, whiskers and tails, does Willow now talk with a lisp?


My wife has a Knitting Blog but regularly describes what the chickens have been up to. If you are interested, have a look.



The reason for this post? I thought that I would drop a line to say how happy I am with Omlet, and to give some encouragement to those who have chickens and no eggs, or those thinking about building a permanent place in their garden for the Eglu - give it a go, it really works.

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I love the sound of Willow's 'stuck on tail', bless her

Not quite stuck on - that was plan B. She got feeling back in it the day it was supposed to be amputated - lucky girl.




Does your missus sell her socks and hats? I've been looking at her blog and would love to have some.


Unfortunately not - it takes her about 8 hours to do each sock, so at minimum wage, they would cost £80 , plus the £20 for the wool. Sorry.[/url]

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Thank you for this - a bit late reading this posting, I received my Eglu and chickens just three days ago, but have been surfing the Omlet forum for weeks to get advice and knowledge.


While it's been a fabulous source of inspiration, and has made me brave enough to try keeping chickens, inevitably there seem to be a lot of posts about problems, illness and disasters - so it is wonderful to read some good news!


I like the run, and wish I'd used planks instead of the logroll which was quite difficult to fix (and despite following the instructions EXACTLY, my area is not big enough for the Eglu and the droppings tray! I've had to put the run diagonally across it). I particularly like the foxproof corners.


I have got lots of useful tips and ideas from the website, and I'm sure it will be a big help if I do get any problems, but at the moment I'm quite nervous about anything happening to my girls, so thanks for presenting a positive picture!

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